Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Football: Maryland Practice, Day 8

Monday afternoon I headed over to the University of Maryland for practice. I looked forward to this practice because it started an hour later than the practices last week and I recognized that the power of a lower sun could create some opportunities for some fantastic photos.

I've been very fortunate this summer that my other contracting work has placed me close to the University of Maryland at College Park and has allowed me to jump over to campus for a 25 minute photo shoot and jump back to my other commitments. I recognize that this is a unique opportunity that will probably not present itself again in the coming seasons so I've made a conscience choice to take advantage of it this year.

This afternoon I took my regular approach of running around as quickly as possible to as many different drilling stations so I could capture as many different drills as possible from as many different perspectives as possible. It's a lot. But I have knee-pads. And yes, you are free to make jokes about that.

The light on Monday was particularly perfect because it was late-day 5:25pm light and it had a lot of color in it. Additionally, the players tend to look down (rather than up) so the lower the light the better the chances are that I can get some exposure up under the helmet.

I shot some offensive linemen on the block today while propping up my monopod on my left knee and discovered a new technique. I was able to anchor my monopod between my thigh muscle and my knee pad and that provided enough stability to allow me to aim my 400mm lens towards my subjects. This position allowed me to stay up for a good 6 minutes while part of the team drilled. During part of that 6 minute period one of the players washed down with a water bottle and I was in the perfect spot to capture the moment. It was worth the bruise on my leg...


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